I think if you go back through a number of our blog posts, we encourage our readers to not be discouraged by negativity, in whichever form it presents itself. But that in itself is a tad negative, isn’t it? Equestrians are such an aggressive bunch of perfection-seeking, competitive weirdos, and we ManeGirls are oh so terribly guilty of it. We have spent a lot of time working our minds around to the opposite thing, which is often helpful when you’re managing a complex, new, stressful situations with wild young horses. We figure if we just keep our bar low, we won’t be too disappointed when things don’t go perfectly.
We all find success in different ways. For me, jumping a good clear round has always felt more like winning than jumping a crappy round with a red. This is surely not true for all, and yes, I do love to win.
This past weekend, two of the three of us enjoyed one of our local horse shows with three of the four young horses in tow. What was a low-key show was made more stressful for Ranchero, as she had two young horses to wrangle, plus she had to play Uber for the two of them. I was a bit nervous too, as my employer was a sponsor of the show, and competing on a young horse in front of your colleagues and clients is *gulp* stressful. But you know what? It was a fabulous show. Aloha stepped up a level and had some four-year-old moments, followed by some amazing progress. Cowboy competed in his first ever hunter derby against some seriously fancy ($$$) hunters and finished just out of the ribbons. Carma won a class, and came 7th in the “work-sponsored” class, a reasonable sized field, despite her nervous jockey worried about making a good impression.
After the last day of the show, Ranchero and I were packing up (while Apes galavanted at a music festival – whatever!) and we both said aloud… “I’m really excited for Thunderbird.” I say those words with such caution. Like the second they pass my lips I think… shit. Now I’m doomed.
I don’t think we are doomed! We have been working our (nice) asses off all year. Sure, we’ve had ups and downs, but that’s training. So, TBird bound we are. Is it going to be super fun? Yes! Do we have big goals? Obv. Do we have reason to believe we can achieve them? Sure do. Is the show going to be perfect? No. But I can’t wait!